Indians enjoy good day at office

India enjoyed a good day at the Australian Open on Saturday as Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna won both their respective doubles and mixed doubles matches to enter the third round of the showpiece event.

However, Mahesh Bhupathi’s men’s doubles campaign came to an end after a tight defeat.

Sania first took the court for the women’s doubles event and along with Zimbabwean partner Cara Black cruised to a 7-5, 6-1 win in the second round against Monica Niculescu from Roumania and Klara Zakopalova of Czech Republic.

Later, playing with first-time Romanian partner Horia Tecau, she won her mixed doubles first round against Hao-Ching Chan of Chinese Taipei and Robert Lindstedt from Sweden.
The sixth seeded Indo-Romanian pair erased a one-set deficit to win 4-6, 7-6 (7-3), 10-8.

Veteran Indian star Leander Paes and his Czech partner Radek Stepanek, seeded fifth, recorded a comfortable 6-1, 6-4 win over Italian Daniele Bracciali and Alexandr Dolgopolov from Ukraine to move to the pre-quarterfinals of the men’s doubles event.The victory means that Paes and Stepanek will clash against India’s Yuki Bhambri and his Kiwi partner Michael Venus for a place in the quarterfinals. 

Bopanna also emerged victorious in both the men’s doubles and mixed doubles. With seventh seeded Pakistani partner Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi, the Indian rallied to beat the British pair of Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 before teaming up with his Slovakian Katarina Srebotnik to beat Raquel Kops-Jones 6-2, 6-3 in the first round of the mixed doubles. 

However, Mahesh Bhupathi and his American partner Rajeev Ram were ousted after a tight 4-6, 6-7 (7-9) defeat against second seeded combination of Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares.

In the girls’ singles event, India’s Snehadevi Reddy lost 4-6, 0-6 to Chinese rival Ying Zhang. Simran Kaur Sethi also crashed out with a 4-6, 2-6 defeat against American 14th seed Katrine Steffensen.

In the boys event, Sumit Nagal lost 3-6 3-6 to local favourite Harry Bourchier. 

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